It was the fall of 1924 when St. David’s vestry approved the purchase of the Surgeon’s Hospital located at 17th and Rio Grande. This was the start of what we know today as the St. David’s network of hospitals. It was 1999 when a group of St. David’s parishioners out of concern for people experiencing homelessness on the streets by the church started a volunteer based Sunday-only ministry. Today we know this ministry as the Trinity Center. The history of St. David’s contains many of these stories like Caritas, Warm Heart International, Next to New, El Buen Samaritano, Austin Habitat for Humanity, to just name a few. They were all small things started with great love. These are visible signs of the entrepreneurial and giving fabric of our church.
The journey that started in 1847 continues today with contemporary initiatives such as Ashes to Go, Laundry Love, SoCo Community, ”Austin vibe” services, adult education and sermon podcasts, just to name a few.
We walk in faith to meet the challenges of a busy, distracted and rapidly changing world. Together we imagine new ways to embody the gospel of Jesus Christ. What else can we build in the future?
This is why I pledge. I want to hold the hands of the many St. David’s generations that met the challenge of their changing world, and built a faithful tomorrow. I want to walk with you and meet your own aspirations. I want to be part of a place where together we can celebrate and grieve, where it is ok to be vulnerable and joyous, where we’ll care for each other and welcome the stranger, the familiar and the different.
I’m proud to serve on a Vestry who has courageously chosen to fund all our programs at 100%. These are the programs that honor our past and look to the future. This year our goals are to support our staff family with far too long delayed salary adjustments, to care for our least paid employees, and to set a sound foundation as we start our journey with a new rector. Like previous generations at St. David’s, the goal has been set in faith, and now the challenge is calling each one of us to once again contribute in communion with those present and long past.
The work of the Holy Spirit cannot be understood in a given moment– it requires an epiphany from a perspective that only time can give. The mysterious ways of God’s work are both challenging and comforting; they call to faith and abiding love. It brings me great joy to walk with you in this journey of faith.
May the love and peace of Christ find you everywhere and in everything you do.